Democratic Party | Eric Massa | New York | News

Probe: Former Rep. Massa Allegedly 'Groped Multiple Male Staffers'

Former Rep. Eric Massa (D-NY), who stepped down (effective yesterday) amid claims that he was being bullied over the health care bill while also the subject of a sexual harassment inquiry involving a male aide and some "salty language" (his words) is under investigation for allegedly groping multiple male staffers, the Washington Post now reports:

Massa"The allegations surrounding the former lawmaker date back at least a year, and involve "a pattern of behavior and physical harassment," according to one source. The new claims of alleged groping contradict statements by Massa, who resigned his office on Monday after it became public that he was the subject of a House ethics committee investigation for possible harassment...According to two sources familiar with the probe, Massa's former deputy chief of staff Ron Hikel provided the information about the staffers' allegations to the House ethics committee three weeks ago. Hikel had earlier sought advice from Majority Leader Steny Hoyer's office about brewing internal complaints, the sources said, and had been urged to report the allegations to the committee."

Massa, who originally cited a recurrence of cancer as his reason for stepping down, was a first-term congressman. He is married to a woman.

Massa has said this on gay rights: "I know from personal experience in the military that the current policy, Don’t ask, don’t tell, doesn’t work. I fully support civil unions and equal legal rights for all Americans. Although civil unions do not provide all of the answers for the issues facing same sex couples, I believe they are a good start, and I support them. I do not support an amendment to the U.S. Constitution banning gay marriage; that is a wedge issue and a political ploy designed to distract voters from the massive failures of the Bush administration and Congress; it would also be the first amendment in our country's history to explicitly restrict rights."

Massa is scheduled to appear on Glenn Beck's show at 5pm, and Larry King Live at 9 EST.

The ladies of The View discussed Massa this morning, before the new "groping" allegations surfaced. Watch it, AFTER THE JUMP...

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  1. Why do you think he resigned! He didn't have to, he could have gone through the ethics panel investigation. He didn't want all of the juicy details coming out.
    Now he's trying to deflect the attention away from himself by making all of these ridiculous allegations. First he was stepping down because of cancer, then because of the allegations against him, now he's saying he was forced out by the administration because because of his health care "no" vote. Pathetic!

    Posted by: Rich | Mar 9, 2010 4:24:00 PM

  2. Something is fishy about this story. I don't believe it. Where is the gropee? Sounds like a witch hunt of liberals.

    Posted by: ty | Mar 9, 2010 4:27:41 PM

  3. Right, he seems like an unsavory character saying whatever will work to distract people from his seamy and illegal behavior. Good to see him go.

    Having said that, however, Rahm Emanuel is a total shitbag. A corrupt, homophobic, washington insider who I sincerely hope dies of a long battle with cancer.

    Posted by: TANK | Mar 9, 2010 4:31:35 PM

  4. it's still early to say but i'd guess there is a bit of everything: a history w/ rahm emmanuel, a recurrent disease, inappropriate behavior, and perhaps more.

    what i did find suspect, from the wapo and other msm, is the precision that it was male staffers, right from the title, as if to sensationalize the whole thing. when that's pertinent, i'm all for it: an anti-gay elected official doing it with someone of his/her gender, that's fair game. but this guy? i'm not sure...

    i think a precision could have been just as effective within the text of the article. when was the last time you saw as a title: "congressman accused of groping female staffers?" or "governator from new york admits to seeing asian prostitute?"

    Posted by: daftpunkydavid | Mar 9, 2010 4:40:01 PM

  5. C'mon guys! How prissy males in the USA have become! A pat on the ass or a complimenting grope of the groin and these youngsters go crying to an ethics panel?!? C'mon! When I was growing up we guys liked the fact that some men appreciated our physical attributes. Let's face it, men never get physical compliments from women, it's nice to know you've got it going on, and if it's coming from a guy, it sure as heck doesn't bother me!

    Posted by: Dan Cobb | Mar 9, 2010 4:54:34 PM

  6. DAFTPUNKYDAVID were you not in the country when the Spitzer, or Clinton stories broke? Really.

    Posted by: patrick nyc | Mar 9, 2010 4:59:22 PM

  7. It would make me very uncomfortable if someone at my job groped me or came on to me. Male or female.

    It a completely different thing if I were in a social situation . . . but at work. NOPE.

    Posted by: Alex | Mar 9, 2010 5:00:19 PM

  8. "a complimenting grope of the groin"

    Dan - you must be as gross as Massa if you wouldn't mind being groped by him. If he touched me I'd clock him!

    Posted by: Nate | Mar 9, 2010 5:02:42 PM

  9. hey patrick nyc,

    my point is just that i am not sure it's so relevant to the story that it must be put in the title. whether it's male or female staffers, it bad either way to grope them at work if they're not consenting.

    as for the rest, i was not in the country when the clinton stories broke; but i was here when the spitzer one did, and i don't recall a title mentioning it was a female prostitute or the color of her skin or her age etc.

    Posted by: daftpunkydavid | Mar 9, 2010 5:10:51 PM

  10. Am I the only one who wants to see how hot (or not) these male staffers are? We got to see the officer Senator Craig hit on. Where are the pictures of Massa's staffers?

    Posted by: lark | Mar 9, 2010 5:18:35 PM

  11. Nate, it's called "s-a-t-i-r-e".

    Posted by: Dan Cobb | Mar 9, 2010 5:19:24 PM

  12. Seriously,daftpunkydavid

    Ashley Dupré (born Ashley Youmans) was ALL over the news with the Spitzer scandal as the call-girl/prostitute he used on a regular basis, including pictures.

    Posted by: Kirby | Mar 9, 2010 5:22:47 PM

  13. Dan,
    Satire wouldn't have included your trip down memory lane from when you were growing up! Nice try defending your stance though.

    Posted by: Nate | Mar 9, 2010 5:27:30 PM

  14. kirby,
    i'm afraid you're not getting my point.

    Posted by: daftpunkydavid | Mar 9, 2010 5:27:50 PM

  15. I do understand your point daftpunkydavid, which I happen to agree with.

    I just wanted to set the record straight on something you stated the was factually incorrect.

    Posted by: Kirby | Mar 9, 2010 5:33:39 PM

  16. Kirby don't be afraid girl!

    Posted by: Coco | Mar 9, 2010 5:46:09 PM

  17. kirby,

    i remember titles like "spitzer linked to prostitution ring" or "ny governor sthg shock wave sthg". naturally these pieces revealed the name and gender of said prostitute, but i don't recall it being in the headlines.

    i'm sure the nypost or the dailynews or some other tabloids had front pages with "call-girl" in it; but, at the risk of sounding a bit elitist, i usually don't read those, which is probably why i don't remember seeing "call-girl" in a headline. but thanks for setting the record straight.

    Posted by: daftpunkydavid | Mar 9, 2010 5:48:19 PM

  18. The comments he's made today really worry me I'm sure he;ll be a Teabagger any day now

    Posted by: John Normile | Mar 9, 2010 5:56:01 PM

  19. John Normile, that would be quite a turn around. Massa is one of the most liberal Members of Congress; the reason he was holding on out health care was because he was holding out for a single payer system, not even a public option. That's as opposite of the spectrum you can get from the tea bag party

    Posted by: Mike C. | Mar 9, 2010 6:30:56 PM

  20. He's a Total Train Wreck.

    Posted by: David Ehrenstein | Mar 9, 2010 6:50:40 PM

  21. You mean fox, right DE? He's about your age with more hair.

    Posted by: TANK | Mar 9, 2010 7:06:51 PM

  22. Massa is just indicative of what NY's political scene is like and it's totally fucked up. Gotta love the big gift, though, he gave to the White House on Glenn Beck's show. Glenn was salivating hoping for some good conspiracy crap on alleged White House strong-arm tactics. What he got instead was Massa's mea culpa (e.g "I forced myself out."). And, then Beck was left totally perplexed as Massa failed to throw even a scintilla of a bone for Beck and his Fox colleagues to blow up into something irresponsible and completely unrepresentative of the situation. Massa is just another portrait in dysfunctional political discouragement.

    Posted by: Les | Mar 9, 2010 8:46:15 PM

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